Today on our 2013 Toyota Highlander we'll be installing the Curt Hitch, part number 13534. This is what our hitch will look like once its installed. Next we'll give you a couple measurements to assist your selecting accessories for your new hitch. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the outermost edge of the bumper is one inch.From the top of the receiver tube opening to the ground is 14-1/2 inches. This will assist your selecting accessories such as a ball mount, bike rack or cargo carrier. Now let's go ahead with the installation.
To begin our install we'll first need to remove the underbody trim panels. Here on the driver's side to remove the underbody panel there are a total of six fasteners, two push pin fasteners and four screws.To remove the push pin fasteners we'll take a flat blade screw driver, pry out the center of the fastener and then remove it completely. Now with the screws removed we'll go ahead and pull the panel out and set it aside for installation later. Next we'll need to remove the tow hooks on each side. To remove the tow hooks there are two fasteners for each.
Once we remove the fasteners we'll set the hardware and tow hooks aside as they will not be reinstalled.Next we'll move over to the passenger side. We're going to go ahead and cut out the necessary portion here on the vehicle. To do that we'll use our paint marker to mark the area and a drummel to cut out the section. Now with our cut made we'll go ahead and remove the bolt that secured it to the frame. Now to make it easier to install the hitch we're going to go ahead and remove the underbody panel on the passenger side.To remove the underbody panel we'll go and remove the three remaining fasteners that secure it; one push pin fastener and two screws.
Next we'll go ahead and point out our attachment points. There'll be three on the driver's side and four here on the passenger side; two on the side of the frame and two in the bottom of the frame.Here on the passenger side we'll need to remove the three weld nut caps. Two of the three will be our attachment points. The third will prevent a clear metal to metal contact between the hitch and the frame. For each one of these attachment points we'll secure it with the new 10mm bolt and 3/8 conical tooth washer, the teeth of the washer facing the hitch.
Now we're ready to go ahead and install the hitch.It's a good idea to get an extra set of hands to help you hold the hitch while you install the fasteners. We'll install each fastener finger tight until we have them all in place. Now with all of our fasteners in place we'll go ahead and tighten them down then torque to specifications as indicated in the instructions. Here on the driver's side we'll trim the underbody panel, we'll follow the instructions and continue the cut out 7-1/2 inches.Now with that done we'll need to cut out an opening so we can fit it around the hitch. Going off of the cut outs in the front corner we'll move it a diagonal shape. We'll go ahead and mark it with my paint marker and then use the rotary tool to cut it out. Now with all our cut outs made we can go ahead and reinstall the underbody panel. With both panels reinstalled this will complete the installation of the Curt Hitch, part number 13534 on our 2013 Toyota Highlander.
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